Today we wanted to pass along some good information about an all too often misunderstood dental procedure commonly known as a root canal. It’s easier than you think to get this restorative treatment, and contrary to popular belief, a root canal is designed to alleviate pain, not inflict it!
In fact, one of our Attleboro, MA dentists, Dr. Ghyath Alkhalil, is an endodontist. This means that he’s had several years of specialized training devoted to administering root canal treatments and other modern techniques that are utilized to save damaged teeth. He’ll use our 3D imaging system to help diagnose and treat you, so your mouth will be in good hands with us! Keep reading, and then call us at 774-225-0618 to request your consultation.
A Closer Look At Tooth Infection
Many patients are surprised to learn that there is a hollow chamber inside each tooth that is filled with pulp. Your pulp actually contains blood vessels, connective tissue, and nerves. Pretty cool, right?
It is the presence of these nerves that allows for sensations of pain or other dental sensitivity. The chamber also contains canals that extend through your tooth roots and down into the bone. All tooth roots have at least one root canal, while some have multiple canals.
While pulp is necessary for the growth and development of teeth, once your teeth are fully mature, they don’t really need it. As such, you can keep your tooth structure intact even if pulp is removed. But we are getting ahead of ourselves.
Let’s take a minute to talk about how a tooth can become infected, causing severe pain and distress.
In many cases, it is dental decay that is left untreated and so is able to reach the center of your tooth that is to blame for the soft pulp inside your tooth becoming infected.
Other causes can include gum disease, a cracked tooth, a sudden injury, and so forth. Regardless of how it happens, the pain and sensitivity will have you looking for relief before you lose your mind.
A Root Canal Can Help
Don’t worry, as a first step, we’ll thoroughly numb your mouth before the root canal procedure gets underway. Some patients are uneasy about the process ahead of time, but when it is over they tell us that it is more akin to getting a filling than they ever expected. That is to say, there’s nothing to it other than a brief period of having a dentist poking around in there to restore the health of your mouth.
During a root canal procedure, our in-house endodontist, Dr. Alkhalil, will use a piece of latex called a dental dam to keep the tooth in question clean and dry during treatment.
After making a small opening in the top of the tooth, he will make use of special tools to remove the infected pulp and to widen and shape the canals. The last step is filling them with a rubber-like material. To strengthen the tooth and help preserve it, Dr. Alkhalil will seal it with a filling or dental crown.
We can usually complete your root canal procedure in one or two visits, depending on the number of canals involved and a few other factors. But we’ll have a better idea of what we are getting into once we have assessed your situation during your preliminary consultation.
Call Today To Take Back Your Smile
We hope you have learned a thing or two about restorative dentistry. If you think you might need a root canal procedure, call our Attleboro, MA dental office today at 774-225-0618 or fill out our online form to request an easy appointment.